Release Date: Oct 11, 2011
Record label: Wind-Up
Genre(s): Pop, Pop/Rock, Alternative Metal, Heavy Metal, Post-Grunge, Goth Metal
Goth goddess Amy Lee has to not only deal with constant turnover — she is now the band’s sole original member — but also shoulder the burden of being a woman in hard rock’s sea of Y chromosomes. On Evanescence, the band’s first album in five years, she still occasionally lapses into drama-club caterwauling, but when she uses baroque orchestral accoutrements to wage an air assault on her demons (as she does on the blistering ”Oceans”), she’s more than just the token girl in the pit. B Download These:Fierce What You WantBrooding Sick .
Difficult births are no stranger to Evanescence. Nothing ever quite seems to come easy for Amy Lee, yet the five years separating Evanescence’s 2006 sophomore effort The Open Door and its eponymous 2011 album were relatively quiet, the band undergoing some lineup changes -- not to mention a switch of producers, from Steve Lillywhite to Nick Raskulinecz -- but nothing comparable to the messy departure of Ben Moody between the group’s first two albums. Such comparative calm is reflected within the grooves of Evanescence, which is less tortured tonally even if it remains quite dramatic.
Back in 2003, when I was just a wee sixth-grader who spent most of my time on StarCraft I and Diablo II and thought that Linkin Park was da heaviest shit around, I was one of those clueless idiots who hadn’t heard of Evanescence until that very well-known chorus of “Bring Me to Life” got etched into my brain from being overplayed on radio, TV (during advertisements for MTV which featured Evanescence’s video for that hit single and which contained Daredevil footage), at fast food joints, record shops, department stores, clothes shops, school events…and basically everywhere else. It was the biggest single around that everyone was talking about, regardless of whether you were into pop, blues, rock, techno, or rap. Y’know, I really hate to say this.
HARD ROCK Without Amy Lee, the men of Evanescence would be faceless grind-and-pounders. Without them, Lee would be just another histrionic doom-bunny lamenting her love life over a piano. But that’s the magic that comes with finding the right creative foil, and Evanescence’s self-titled third album captures each party elevating the other far above where their proclivities would get them on their own.